Fortuner and Innova Updated For Refinement

NOTHING like starting the year with something new and if you are a Toyota enthusiast, you might be interested in two model updates that were just introduced – Fortuner and Innova. The change might not be very dramatic but in the words of UMW Toyota Motor Sdn Bhd (UMWT) ‘subtle for a more refined and prestigious look’.

Innova Updated For Refinement

We start with the Innova that comes with three variants and their prices on the road without insurance – the top end Innova 2.0X at RM129,677; Innova 2.0G at RM121,483 and the entry level Innova 2.0E at RM111,622. There are six colour options with a new addition among them - Medium Silver Metallic, Attitude Black Mica, Phantom Brown, Silver Metallic, Super White II and Bronze Mica Metallic (new). The flagship Innova 2.0X has the additional choice of Crimson Spark Red Metallic for that subtle flash.

Changes from the front perspective include the chrome and black theme grille, door mirrors with chrome housing and redesigned foglamps and foglamp bezels to achieve a bolder look. As usual, the flagship Innova 2.0X comes with an ‘Enhanced Package’ to add exclusivity; it includes a new design for wheel arch mouldings that protect the body work, new lateral body mouldings and redesigned side skirts for a sporty touch.

Generally, at the rear, the garnish on the back door is restyled to ‘visually widen’ this MPV (multipurpose vehicle) while the roof spoiler (only for the 2.0X) is slightly reprofiled for better aerodynamics. The previous wheel sizes are maintained for the respective model with the flagship 2.0X getting the 17-inch alloys finished in new Dark Grey Metallic and fitted with 215/55R17 tyres while the other two models are fitted with 16-inch refreshed dual tone alloys shod with 205/65R16 rubbers.

Stepping inside, one could enjoy the functional Optitron meters in the instrument panel of the Innova 2.0X and 2.0G with a 4.2-inch full colour Multi Information Display (MID) in between the meters. A practical touch is the addition of more charging ports to keep everyone on board happy.

The front two USB ports are repositioned to the dashboard from the centre console and additional USB ports are provided for those in the third-row seats. UMWT says all these ports have fast charging capacity for compatible smart phones and other portable devices. An option is a wireless charging pad in the centre console for all the model variants.

For 2021, additional features are provided to give the driver greater awareness of the surroundings. First up is the Blind Spot Monitor with Rear Cross Traffic Alert (standard to Jnnova 2.0X and 2.0G, but optional for 2.0E) that uses sensors on body and bumpers to detect other vehicles in a blind spot or approaching vehicles when reversing out of a parking spot.
Next is the Panoramic View Monitor (standard to Innova 2.0X and 2.0G) that uses cameras around the vehicle body to capture a 360-degree view. This helps the driver to gauge the surroundings with selectable views and avoid spot hazards, which is useful when parking in narrow or tight spaces.

Perhaps a more relevant item is the installation of a Toyota Vehicle Telematics System (VTS) in the Innova 2.0X and 2.0G (optional to 2.0E). The system tracks the vehicle’s movements using GPS and GSM technology. Should the vehicle get stolen, the VTS Command Centre could determine its location and inform the relevant authorities to make a faster recovery.

Power-wise, it has remained constant with the 1TR-FE 2.0-litre (1998cc) DOHC 16-valve four-cylinder petrol engine that delivers 102kW (139PS) at 5600rpm and 183Nm at 4000rpm to the rear wheels. All models come with the six-speed Super ECT electronic automatic transmission. They also come with a five-year warranty with unlimited mileage that are subject to terms and conditions.

Fortuner: Bigger Diesel Engine

The 2021 Fortuner sees more significant changes, especially the diesel variant that now comes with a bigger displacement engine. The Fortuner 2.8 VRZ replaces the Fortuner 2.4 VRZ and bigger means more power to start the year with. The 1GD-FTV 2755cc four-cylinder 16-valve DOHC engine with turbo Intercooler VNT fuel feed system delivers 150kW (204PS) from 3000 to 3400rpm but it’s the huge torque that counts – 500Nm from 1600 to 2800rpm. That power output goes to the wheels via a six-speed automatic with sequential shifter.

For the sake of comparison to know how much more oomph you are getting with the bigger displacement engine, the previous 2.4VRZ’s 2393cc engine, which is also from the same GD (Global Diesel) turbodiesel engine series, churns out 110kW (150PS) at 3400rpm and 400Nm from 1600 to 2000rpm. This 2.4-litre turbodiesel was first introduced here in the Hilux and Fortuner towards the mid-2016.

Besides the bigger engine, the Fortuner 2.8 VRZ also comes with a fresh body colour, Bronze Mica Metallic, complemented with a Black Roof that UMWT says is made exclusively for this model to justify its flagship status. This Black Roof feature is also available with the model with the Super White II colour, but only for this variant. By the way, the 2.8 VRZ is priced at RM203,183 on the road without insurance.

The cheaper alternative is of course the petrol version, 2.7 VRZ, which retains the same power unit as before. The 2TR-FE engine with Dual VVT-i (intelligent variable valve timing) displacing 2694cc still has decent power on taps with 122kW (166PS) at 5200rpm and 245Nm at 4000rpm, which is the same output as previously. Toyota obviously sees no necessity to upgrade further as this output range continues to meet general driving needs well. The 2.7 VRZ is yours for RM172,244 on the road without insurance.

Visual updates were made to gain a ‘more dynamic frontal appearance’ through Quad LED (light emitting diode) headlamps that flank a mesh-type grille. The restyling exercise includes the other lighting units, front and rear bumpers as well as the front Skid Pad to enhance the Fortuner’s rugged outlook.

‘Additional distinctiveness’ is achieved for the flagship 2.8 VRZ through such visual elements as in having the roof, A-pillars, door mirrors and roof-mounted rear spoiler being finished in black. What’s more, the corner mouldings are also said to be specially shaped for an aerodynamic outlook. Both variants come with 18-inch alloy wheels of a new design that are fitted with 265/60R18 Highway Terrain tyres.

Interior updates appear more evident in the Fortuner 2.8 VRZ with new design trim and colour, likewise the new upholstery, to reflect a more modern premium appeal. Generally, the new instrument panel offers a revised Multi Information Display opening animation while ambient illumination adds a classy touch at night. The key cover is also redesigned.

‘Comfort and convenience’ features come in the LED interior lights, Electrochromic rearview mirror (to eliminate dazzle for the driver), and eight-way powered seat control for driver and front passenger. USB charging ports are standard and for interior space flexibility, the second and third row seatrests could be folded to accommodate Ikea purchases.

A neat technical item is the Variable Flow Control power steering that helps improve fuel economy by reducing power steering pump consumption torque. UMWT also says Toyota engineers have enhanced steering feel to achieve natural handling that matches vehicle road speed. For the Fortuner 2.8 VRZ, a Sport mode enhances power steering responsiveness.

The part-time four-wheel drivetrain comes with shift on-the-fly to engage 4x4 on the move via a rotary know. Stability features include Active Traction Control, for which a new feature from 2021 is the Auto Limited Slip Differential. This system controls braking when one of the rear wheels begin to spin and directs engine power to the wheel with best traction.

Accident prevention is enhanced with the Toyota Safety Sense that uses a camera and radar to detect other vehicles and apply appropriate action – Pre-Collison System, Lane Departure Alert, Dynamic radar Cruise Control and Yaw Assist Function - to prevent an accident. New options include the Wireless Charger and Kick Sensor Powered Rear Door. - LPS